MAAX proudly celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2019. Over the past half-century, we have journeyed from a small, regional manufacturer of fiberglass products and components to a globally recognized North American leading manufacturer of the bathware industry.
Our success stems from our long-standing commitment to innovation, our team of passionate employees, and our thousands of loyal customers, partners and suppliers.
Our anniversary year offers a unique opportunity to celebrate our accomplishments and thank you for your loyal support in helping us fulfill our mission of building a better bathware industry.
MAAX’s roots date back to 1969 when, as a then small entrepreneurial business in the Beauce region of Quebec, the company was founded to manufacture snowmobile components and swimming pools.
Over the years, our product portfolio evolved, diversified and grew... and MAAX ultimately emerged as a North American market leader in the bathware industry, in particular with these three main product lines: bathtubs, shower solutions and shower doors.
Throughout our history, MAAX has made design, comfort, quality, convenience, ease of doing business, and – of course – customer service, our priorities. It's a strategy that's paid off.
Today, MAAX has over 1,300 employees, and our diversified customer base composed of distributors, specialized stores and retailers is constantly expanding. Our products are present in the bathrooms of thousands of homes in Canada and the United States. This is further proof that MAAX is playing an integral part in the lives of millions of people.
Here’s our story…
When the snowmobile market started declining in the early 1970s, the company had no other choice but to diversify. Starting in 1973, it began producing fibreglass bathtubs and showers for the residential market. The company subsequently decided to specialize increasingly in bathroom products.
Modern Fiberglass and Metal Inc. continued to grow, but it gradually abandoned the manufacture of snowmobile parts and of swimming pools.
In 1986, it opened a subsidiary called Acrylica in Sainte-Marie-de-Beauce, helping to expand its range of products, with acrylic bathtubs, showers and spas, as well as whirlpool and air massage systems.
The name MAAX was coined by combining the first letter of each of the following words:
‘’M’’ stands for Modern Fiberglass, the name of our first plant or subsidiary
‘’A’’ relates to our second subsidiary Acrylica
‘’A’’ refers to our subsidiary Archimède 2000
‘’X’’ for multiplication, which represents our anticipated growth
In 1987, a new company name was adopted, MAAX Inc. During that same year, the company became a public company and was listed on the Montreal Stock Exchange.
The following year, MAAX Inc. established its first research and development centre in Sainte-Marie to boost innovation and to launch new products.
The company’s shares were listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange in 1992.
MAAX maintained the momentum and kept growing thanks to multiple strategic acquisitions that enabled it to offer a complementary range of products.
Between 1993 and 2002, MAAX purchased more than 15 companies. Besides bathtubs, showers and spas, the company was now also producing shower doors, medicine cabinets, kitchen cabinets, bathroom furniture and taps.
MAAX emerged as one of the largest North American manufacturers within its industry.
By 2004, MAAX was excelling, with annual sales climbing to $640 million. The company owned 24 factories and distribution centres in Canada, the U.S. and the Netherlands, and employed 3,800 people.
Placide Poulin, eager to set out on a new family adventure, and for personal reasons, decided to sell the company. J.W. Childs Associates, a Boston-based investor group, acquired MAAX and became its majority shareholder.
When the housing bubble burst in the United States in 2008 and the cost of primary materials suddenly increased, MAAX, like many other North American manufacturers, was hit hard by the market decline in residential construction.
The company accumulated debt and had no other choice but to seek creditor protection. MAAX was put up for sale again and was acquired by investment firm Brookfield Asset Management.
This transaction provided hope for a promising future for MAAX, which, thanks to its new and stronger financial position, was able to once again focus on developing and launching new products.
In 2011, MAAX adopted the slogan “Enjoy the experience.” It marked the start of a new era for the company.
In 2017, MAAX became part of American Bath Group (ABG), headquartered in Tennessee. This merger is benefitting both companies since they now hold one of the largest market shares in the North American bathware industry. While ABG plans to build on the strengths of the MAAX brand in Canada, it will also offer MAAX interesting business opportunities with its neighbours to the south.
MAAX at a glance...
Health and Safety is the #1 of the eight fundamental elements of MAAX’s Operational Excellence strategy, namely Safety, People, Molds, Quality, Delivery, Cost, Process and Customer. A thorough analysis of the working environment and its equipment have allowed MAAX to identify safety and ergonomic hazards and to build an action plan that we update on a regular basis in light of corrective actions and suggestions put forward by our teams.
As part of this approach, the MAAX team has implemented a series of initiatives, and the severity and frequency of accidents has significantly decreased thanks to the accountability and commitment of all MAAX employees.
A pioneer in introducing acrylic technology to bathware, MAAX consistently pushes the boundaries. Over the years we have introduced dozens of new products and secured over 80 registered patents. One of the latest innovations is the revolutionary U tile, a shower wall solution that offers an alternative to tiles, creating an entirely new product category.
Innovation is part of MAAX’s DNA. Our employees are always seeking new ways of doing things while constantly listening to our customers, learning about their needs, and using their expertise to find innovative solutions.